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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Nacarat closing in on swansongHeadlines
Nacarat winning last year's Racing Plus

Nacarat's fifth successive appearance in the Racing Plus Chase at Kempton Park might be his swansong on the racetrack.

Ton George, who trains the 12-year-old grey, feels the valuable Grade Three handicap could be the perfect stage for him to end his career.

Nacarat has been a standing dish around Kempton, winning this race in 2009 and again 12 months ago, as well as being placed the two years in between, and although he has shown little in two races this season, George hopes a return to his favourite course will turn around his fortunes.

The handler said: "He's in good old form, is working well and loves the track. His work has been good at home and we'll see whether the fire is still burning back on the track. His two races this season haven't really been his thing and this race is the one we've been aiming for since the start of the season.

"It might well be his last race. We won't shut the door completely, but he can't keep going forever and owes nobody anything, so there is every chance it will be his last run. We know he loves Kempton and the ground should be fine."

The progressive Rolling Aces, winner of the last two of just three races over fences, spearheads a two-pronged attack from the Paul Nicholls stable along with Grand National hope What A Friend, who is part-owned by Sir Alex Ferguson.

The Ditcheat trainer said: "The record of Rolling Aces speaks for itself. He's won his last two and hopefully he will keep progressing. He's gone up 11lb and is quite high (in the handicap) for a novice. I think 149 for a horse having only his fourth run over fences is quite high, but we'll see.

"What A Friend is being aimed for the Grand National and he will improve for the run. Both horses are in good form."

Harry Fry is hoping Opening Batsman is one step ahead of the handicapper. Victories at Plumpton and Wincanton sandwich a good run in defeat behind Rolling Aces.

The trainer said: "He's taken time to fill his frame and it's only this year over fences that we've really seen the best of him. He's done everything right so far. We were second to Rolling Aces at Wincanton, beaten 11 lengths off level weights - it's better ground on Saturday and we're in receipt of 9lb."

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30 August 2016

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28 August 2016

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